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Film Crew Ripoff Title Is A Ripoff

Trademarks and copyrights are a funny thing. So funny, in fact, that I don’t fully understand them which, admittedly, also describes a great many other things in this world. “Mystery Science Theater 3000” is a pretty distinctive name and you would most certainly be sued if you tried to copy it. The same could be said of “Rifftrax” and “Cinematic Titanic.” “The Film Crew,” however? Probably not so much.

This forum post mentions a rather questionable-looking upcoming DVD listed on Amazon. As best as I can tell, it appears to be a film called Wet Heat released under a “Film Crew” heading. Either that, or a film called Film Crew: Wet Heat, which makes even less sense. As you can see above, the DVD cover does not inspire one’s confidence in the quality of the product. The DVD extras include what is referred to as “FILM CREW bloopers.” Oh, do sign me up.

Anyway, my reason for posting this is to make sure that you don’t get suckered into buying this. I have no way of knowing if the makers of this classy DVD were trying to prey on MSTies’ innocence and naiveté. It certainly looks like a title that deserves mocking, either way. This is not — I repeat, NOT — our Film Crew. Be aware that, if you purchase this, those dreams of tasty Film Crew bloopers will be crushed harshly, cruelly. There will be no Kevin Murphys in dresses for you, nor any Bill Corbetts dropping f-bombs. Just sleazy, unbridled c-movie filth.


8 Responses

  1. Note at the the top of the case it says “DOUBLE FEATURE”. I think it’s actually two movies, one called “Film Crew” and the other called “Wet Heat”.

  2. I noticed that too, but they must be really short movies — Amazon lists the total runtime as 114 minutes. Also, “Film Crew” has got to be the most boring movie title I’ve ever heard, so I hope they didn’t use it. (Of course, “Wet Heat” is muuuuch better.)

  3. “FILM CREW gives a mind-bending twist to the murder mystery as a group of miscreant movie theatre employees prepare for a midnight movie and start disappearing one by one! Will anyone survive until showtime…?”

    Nice. It’s the first ten minutes of Scream 2. That explains the short running time.

  4. Yeah, my apologies if I left any relevant details out of the article. I really couldn’t stand to read much about it. Bleh.

  5. you’re spot on — titles can’t be copyrighted. just think of all the songs you know called “crazy.” can’t exactly copyright a generic word, so the law then has to apply to all titles.

    so in essence, i could write a four-movement violin concerto tomorrow and entitle it “I Slept With Someone In Fall Out Boy And All I Got Was This Stupid Song Written About Me,” and as long as it wasn’t a cover, i can do it completely legally. in fact, it’s what They Might Be Giants did with “sapphire bullets of love.” it was a pre-existing song that sounded nothing like what TMBG ended up recording, but it’s perfectly legit.

    can you tell i’m taking a media law class at the moment?

  6. Looking at that DVD cover, I’m not unconvinced that this is actually a double feature of two movies entitled “Film Wet” and “Crew Heat.”

  7. I wonder if the folks releasing the DVD intended Amazon to associate their product the way it did or if there’s some sort of automated process that makes those connections.

  8. I’m fairly certain that it’s automated, but they still throw around the name “Film Crew” on a DVD that looks very much like a b-movie our Crew might riff on. I still give them part of the blame.

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